Q&A: Gamekeeping

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I have permission to shoot over about a hundred and fifty acres and would really like to put down a few pheasants, is it really worth it on an acreage of this size?

Mike says: There is a great deal more to this question than meets the eye! My short answer would be a definite “Yes”. However, there are many things to look at before embarking on such an enterprise and I could write pages on this subject. Having a small shoot of your own can be immensely rewarding and from the outset you need to decide how far you want to go. A friend of mine has less than 100 acres and each year he puts down about 75 birds, not a lot I know, but he gets huge amounts of enjoyment from this and wanders round once a week with his black lab and shoots a couple of birds and is more than happy. A lot of course depends on your relationship with the farmer and how the farm is run and what cover is available. If you have any woodland and if there is the potential for a small area of cover crop you really won’t go far wrong. I would say go for it, start small and keep costs as low as possible, see how the first year turns out and go from there. A final word of caution though, tiny shoots have a habit of turning into little shoots, and little shoots into bigger shoots and so on. Running your own shoot can be immensely rewarding and I would very much doubt you will regret staring your own enterprise.

Posted in Expert Advice

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